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Akpabio’s Defection to APC: A Greediness or Smartness?

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Akpabio’s Defection to APC: A Greediness or Smartness?

By Joseph Atainyang

Senator Godswill Akpabio, the immediate past governor of Akwa Ibom State, who singlehandedly imposed Udom Gabriel Emmanuel as Governor on Akwa Ibom people, has left the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, abandoning Governor Udom in the high seas. He has joined the All Progressives Congress, APC and will be officially received by the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo at the Ikot Ekpene Township Stadium this Wednesday. It was the former Governor who ‘forced’ Udom on the state because he was poised to averting an alleged ‘death covenant’ between him, an Annang man and Ibibio people, whom he had sworn to, as those he will put back into the office.

I remember vividly how in December 2014, Mr Udom Emmanuel became a ‘costly commodity’ who was sold at the Uyo Township Stadium by the PDP delegates who were paid one million naira each from public fund. Udom eventually became the PDP flagbearer and 22 other aspirations left for a 40 days and 40 nights ‘torture’ in the Wilderness of Abuja, through the instrumentality of Godswill Akpabio who allegedly manipulated the mercenaries that denied them access to the then President Goodluck Jonathan. The election came and, at least 30 souls became sacrificial lambs that helped in the PDP victory in the State. All legal tactics were explored by gallant Akwa Ibom people to unseat Mr Udom Emmanuel. But, Akwa Ibom citizens are quite familiar with the fact that, only rapture was capable of stopping Udom from becoming the governor. They are familiar with the mantra that WHAT GOD CANNOT DO, MONEY CAN DO and that WHAT MONEY CANNOT DO, “MUCH MONEY” CAN DO.

And so it came to pass that MUCH MONEY was being allegedly deployed to ‘buying justice’ at the Supreme Court of Nigeria for the retention of the ‘mangled electoral victory’ of Deacon Udom Emmanuel. The business kicked off and governance of groundbreaking had its smooth sail. Udom Emmanuel moved on, rolling out a deceitful and invisible industrialization policy. He settled down to relocate some important projects like the Ibaka Deep Seaport by inaugurating a technical committee whose duty was to technically delay the take off of the project so that he can possibly relocate it to Ibeno with particles of benefits drawn to ONNA, his home area. He took on roads but shabbily enjoyed ‘commissioning’ unfinished roads.

The most interesting part of Udom Emmanuel’s administration was, and is still his willpower to have sealed the debt profile of the government he was taking over from. While President Buhari had made public that he met “a virtually collapsing economy”, Udom Emmanuel must have met a very progressive purse, with enough reserve for his government. Even when political commentators and pundits prevailed on him to declare the debt profile of the state, he adamantly remained silent, sealing every loopholes to protect his ‘Great Teacher’. Of course, he had been a “been to” in the words of Ayi Kwei Ammar. He was a Lagos Boy-turned stooge who was not aware that Akpabio’s first press statement in 2007 was that of announcing the 40 million naira deficit left behind by the Victor Attah led administration. So, Governor Emmanuel was virtually a neophyte as far as politics was concerned. No wonder he could excitedly, during his inaugural speech at the Nest of Champions, named the Akwa Ibom International Stadium after Godswill Akpabio, his now traitor-tutor.

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Drama started when he immediately sought the support of the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly to help him secure loans. He had got different loans of N 20 billion, N 10 billion as well as N 1 billion naira within a few months into his administration. But his pretention got a swollen posture as time went on, especially when he refused the first tranche of the bail out fund that was shared among most states in the country through the fatherly disposition of President Muhammadu Buhari. But when he could no longer do so, he surrendered and surreptitiously went to collect all the bailouts. Thank God to a committed Akwa Ibom based investigative reporter, Abasifreke Effiong who took it upon himself to expose Governor Emmanuel.

Udom Emmanuel also cancelled the employment of five thousand (5,000) teachers that Akpabio had facilitated when he (Udom) was Secretary to Government. He described the exercise as being fraudulent and not following due process. Although revelations from very authentic sources stated that Akpabio had absorbed three thousand (3,000) teachers from the Annang stock, sharing two thousand (2,000) teachers among Ibibio, Oron and other ethnic groups in the state, victims of the sack had dragged the government to court for the outright dismissal. When last year, an Akwa Ibom based National Industrial Court ruled in favour of the teachers, the Udom Emmanuel led administration immediately appealed the judgement, a show of strong contention with his predecessor. This is even as it has also been laid open that three thousand (3,000) teachers were again employed into the state Secondary Schools board in the year 2017 to handle science subjects, including English Language and Mathematics.

The current Governor saw what was on ground, the ‘Uncommon Transformation’ and decided to take upon his shoulders, the responsibility of delivery ‘Superior Performance’, although nothing could be pointed-at as superior. He thought of dismantling the political structure of the Great Teacher and rose to inaugurate the Dakkada initiative. Little by little, Udom gradually succeeded in nearly flushing out the followers of his political mentor. Of course, he has also raised his boys and built his ‘unstable and cracking’ dynasty. So, when in January 2018, the Great Teacher dropped a bomb that “all is not well with Ikot Ekpene Senatorial District, it was an omen that a gory picture awaited the tail end of Udom’s initial single term arrangement on the governorship throne of Akwa Ibom State.

Consequent upon that declaration by the Senate Minority Leader, Udom had sent his right hand man, Ephraim Inyang-Eyen, who is the Commissioner for Works to go and busy himself around the ongoing dualized Uyo-Ikot Ekpene Road, in pretence that efforts were being made to ensure that ‘all was well with Ikot Ekpene Senatorial District’. Even the Four Point by Sheraton Hotels at Ikot Ekpene has not also been put to use by the Udom Emmanuel led government, not to talk of the Ibom Specialist Hospital which has been abused from being an international referral centre to a place where patients would rather be victimized with accelerated death (may you rest in peace, Mboho’s President).

However, although Akpabio could be accepted into the APC fold, the picture remains very blurring as to what kind of interest is compelling him to make the move. He was the sole proprietor and purveyor of the Divine Mandate of Udom Emmanuel in 2015. Akpabio was the best campaign manager of Udom Emmanuel. He sold him and his wife to the Akwa Ibom populace, who however, could not have their votes count. Perhaps the deal between the Great Teacher and his student has been done. Perhaps Udom has paid all the debt left behind by Akpabio and of course, his (Udom’s) election was the most expensive in the whole country. So, whether or not Governor Udom has been able to free Akpabio of all debt may perhaps be immaterial, because part of the monies had been spent to buy Akwa Ibom into his hands.

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It was not surprising when, last month, the PDP organized an endorsement rally to affirm their support to the reelection of both Governor Udom Emmanuel and Senator Godswill Akpabio. The latter had thanked them for the initiative but noted that it did not matter under which party he stood to return to the Senate. The town had then been inundated with countless series of rejoinders as to whether or not, Akpabio had made the statement. Even when about 15 senators were said to have dumped the APC, after it became obvious that President Buhari and the leadership of the party were not ready to yield to their antics, Akpabio, perhaps a mighty force behind the plot stayed back. A few northern governors have equally left the APC while some PDP stalwarts are gradually negotiating their ways into the ruling party.

At the moment, the PDP in Akwa Ibom State has reaffirmed its commitment to the support of Mr Udom Emmanuel for his second term in office. In a press statement issued yesterday by the party’s Publicity Secretary, Comrade Ini Ememobong, as a report of its recent Federal Constituency Tour, the party is ready to ensure that Governor Emmanuel returns to the hilltop mansion in 2019. The constituency tour which was led by the State Chairman of the Party, Obong Paul Ekpo, together with his lieutenants told Emmanuel that all party faithful were solidly behind his reelection mandate.

As measures to overhauling the seeming shattered political posture of the state, the Udom Emmanuel led PDP government summoned an emergency stakeholders meeting yesternight at the State Banquet Hall. Governor Emmanuel had called on all party faithful to remain loyal and resolute to ‘waging war’ against the APC so as to win elections in 2019. Of course, having been emboldened by the stakeholders from all across the state, the Governor was confident that ‘a miracle could happen’ so he can be delivered out of the stiff hands of his Great Teacher who took all the risks to foist him on Akwa Ibom people. At the said meeting, the former flagbearer of Labour Party during the 2015 gubernatorial race in the state, Senator Mrs Helen Esuene; Senator Emmanuel Ibokessien, Rt. Hon. Ndueso Essien, Otuekong Idongesit Nkanga, Senator Effiong Bob, Rt. Hon. Felicia Bassey, Senator Bassey Albert, Barr Emmanuel Enoidem and others bared their minds and pledged their ‘wobbling’ loyalty to the Governor.

Meanwhile, political commentators have said former Governor Akpabio is greedy and wants a juicy position in APC. They describe the Senator as a traitor whose game cannot be without a huge interest. Some even accuse him of being overzealously gluttonous and always wanting to stay in Abuja to control the State. They told whoever cared to listen that Godswill has graduated from political gangsterism to that of smartness where he is trying to negotiate his way to the top. Some even describe him as a Nigerian Maradona of modern days. Perhaps this is why Akpabio was seen bowing down to President Buhari in London on Sunday. He took a one-man-sqaurd journey to see the President who is on a 10-day working visit to London. This is one way the Senator wants to use to smoothen his sail to the top.

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Conversely, many have seen the defection of the Senate Minority Leader as a means of amnesty, a situation which could save him from being tried and possibly convicted, as one who has some cases with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC. They say Akpabio is making an escapade into APC and nothing more, because according to them, it is not possible for an APC person to be probed by the Buhari led government. Even so, many others are saying that Godswill Akpabio is eyeing the seat of the senate president which has been zoned to the South South for the next political dispensation. But, are these the actual reasons for his journey into the APC?

Recently, Justice Adebukola Banjoko of a Federal Territory High Court in Abuja convicted two ex-governors. The first was ex-governor of Taraba State, Jolly Nyame who was convicted on 27 out of the 41 counts contained in the charge filed against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in July 2007. He was to serve 28 years in prison. The judge also sentenced a former governor of Plateau State, Joshua Dariye, to 14 years in prison for corruption. Reports say the former Governor who was currently a Senator under the platform of the APC was first arraigned on a 23-count charge for the offence in 2007.

In view of the foregone, it could be said that none of the projections earlier posited could possibly connect to the interest that has brought Akpabio into the APC fold. Perhaps Akpabio has his expectations as far as returning to the Senate is possible. But, one would not be very correct to think that he would be successful at possibly becoming a Senate President, absolutely unthinkable. Also of importance is that Akpabio cannot, as an APC person escape conviction by the EFCC, if he is eventually tried.

In inference, having been so keen to go through this postulation, one is left with a tough thought. Is Akpabio a greedy politician? Has he an interest which Governor Udom Emmanuel cannot let go? Is it about the single (four year) tenure that was signed with the Oron people? Is it that Udom Emmanuel doesn’t want to keep to his promise? What could be Akpabio’s interest that the PDP, both in the state and at the national levels cannot protect? If greediness is the main impulse dragging Senator Akpabio to the APC, is there anything he cannot get in PDP that is going to be satisfied in the new party? For those who think his decampment into the APC has a way of making an Oron governorship possible in 2019, have they realized that Akpabio is a stranger in APC? Smartness is possibly the only pointer to Akpabio that he and Governor Udom Emmanuel cannot win elections in 2019 under the PDP.

Joseph Atainyang is a journalist and public affairs commentator: 07036964637

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Godstime

    August 7, 2018 at 2:06 pm

    I don’t believe this form my mentor, please come back home we still love you sir (Akwa Ibom still love sir) Godstime Ekpo is my Name.

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Opinion

SEN. BASSEY ALBERT’S FOUR YEARS OF UNPRECEDENTED REPRESENTATION

Senator Albert is today considered among the first eleven achievers in the 8th Senate on account of his performance. It was no surprise therefore when in 2018, the Senate Press Corp, the body of Journalists covering the Senate honoured him with the South South Senator of the Year Award for his legislative accomplishments.

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SEN. BASSEY ALBERT’S FOUR YEARS OF UNPRECEDENTED REPRESENTATION

By Victor Effik

As the 8th Senate winds down today, 6th June 2019, the senator representing Akwa Ibom North East (Uyo) Senatorial District and Leader, Akwa Ibom State caucus in National Assembly, Distinguished Senator Bassey Albert ( OBA) can hold his head high on account of his stellar performance as senator representing Akwa Ibom North East (Uyo) Senatorial District in the 8th Senate.

Senator Albert is today considered among the first eleven achievers in the 8th Senate on account of his performance. It was no surprise therefore when in 2018, the Senate Press Corp, the body of Journalists covering the Senate honoured him with the South South Senator of the Year Award for his legislative accomplishments.

As the Senator Abubukar Bukola Saraki led Senate holds its valedictory session today, 6th June, 2019 to signal the end of the 8th Senate, we bring you a blow by blow account of his stewardship in the Senate and why the people of Uyo Senatorial District voted him to return to the 9th Senate as a ranking senator to finish the good job he has started.

MOTIONS SPONSORED BY SENATOR ALBERT

1. Motion on urgent need to halt the dilapidated and disintegrated state of Ikot Ekpene-Itu-Calabar Federal Highway.

As a result of the motion, the Senate set up an ad-hoc committee to inspect all bad federal roads and made recommendations. The Senate also directed the Federal Government and the relevant ministries, agencies and departments to undertake an urgent intervention on the road. It was this directive that made the NDDC to undertake remedial measures on the road.

2. Motion on the need to curb the soaring rate of unemployment in Nigeria

The motion called on the government at all levels to take decisive steps to address the unemployment situation in the country. The motion generated intense debate in the Senate and eventually led the APC federal government to include in the 2016 Budget its election promise to pay the stipend of N5,000 to vulnerable groups in the country.

3. Motion on urgent need for effective implementation of the Joint Venture Cash Calls Obligations by NNPC

The motion was deliberated upon in the Senate on Wednesday, 13th April, 2016. The motion observed that although the National Assembly has been appropriating for the NNPC Joint Venture cash calls obligations in the past, it disclosed that the current outstanding cash call obligations in the oil and gas sector stands at over $6billion.

The Senate adopted the motion and mandated its Committees on Gas, Petroleum Upstream, Finance and Appropriation chaired by Senator Albert to carry out a holistic investigation into the matter.

The committee held its public hearing in November 2016 with major oil companies and the operator of NNPC Joint Venture stakeholders of the oil and gas industry and the general public in attendance. The report of the committee was submitted to the Senate by the Chairman, Senate Joint Committee on Joint Venture Cash Calls Obligations, Senator Bassey Albert on Thursday, April 27, 2017.

4. Motion on the urgent need to address the present economic state of the nation

The motion, which was presented on Wednesday, 25th May, 2016 drew the attention of the government to the nation’s economic scorecard, released by the National Bureau of Statistics which indicated that the economy had plunged into recession. Senators supported the motion that the Finance Minister and the CBN governor be invited to brief the Senate on the monetary and fiscal policies adopted to salvage the situation.

5. Motion on Urgent need to investigate the granting of concession of the western and Eastern rail lines to General Electric of USA.

The motion presented by Senator Albert on Tuesday, 8th November, 2016 indicated that the Federal Ministry of Transport had violated the provisions of the Public Enterprises (privatization and Commercialisation) Act, 1999 by unilaterally engaging the General Electric for the concessioning of the western and Eastern rail lines. The Senate then mandated the committee on privatization, land transport, finance, anti-corruption and financial crimes, special duties, trade and investment and judiciary to investigate the procedure adopted in the engagement of General Electric for the concession of the rail lines. Consequently, the minister of transportation, Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi was summoned by the committee to answer questions on the matter.

6. Motion on the need to save the 215 megawatt Kaduna power plant

The motion presented on Thursday, June 15, 2017 sought action to be taken on the protracted power shortages in the northern part of the country leading to the shut down of the industrial sector in the region.

MOTIONS CO-SPONSORED BY SENATOR ALBERT

1. Motion on the need to investigate pre-shipment inspection of Export Activities in Nigeria

The motion was presented by Senator Yusuf Abubakar Yusuf (Taraba Central) on 21st July 2016 with 13 other senators as co-sponsors among them Senator Albert.

2. Motion on Mounting Crisis in the North East

The motion was presented on Tuesday, 4th October, 2016. It was sponsored by Senator Baba Kaka Bashir Garbai (Borno Central) with 17 other senators as co-sponsors, among them Senator Albert.

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3. Motion on unidentifiable sooty particulate in Rivers State and its environs

The motion presented on Tuesday, 28th February 2017 drew government’s attention to droppings of unidentifiable sooty particulates in Rivers State, which is suspected to be after effects of oil and gas exploration and exploitation activities in the state by multi-national companies. The motion was sponsored by Senator George Thompson Sekibo (Rivers East) with 30 other senators as co-sponsors among them Senator Albert.

4. Motion on a call for the proper resettlement and compensation of the Bakassi people

The motion, which was presented on Tuesday, 28th February 2017 was sponsored by Senator Gershom Bassey (Cross River South) with 13 other senators as co-sponsors among them Senator Albert.

5. Motion on the excess crude account: an illegality and a drain pipe

The motion, which was presented on Tuesday, October 31, 2017 and sponsored by Senator by Sen. Rose Oko and 42 others among them Sen. Albert, expressed worry that the account is not in tandem with sections 80 (1-4) and 162 (1-3) of the 1999 constitution and accordingly asked the executive to suspend the operation of the account.

6. Motion on the urgent need to investigate, regularise and amend conflicting, vague and unjust remedies which the CBN offers to victims of excess and arbitrary bank charges and illegal deductions by commercial banks.

The motion presented on Tuesday, January 30, 2018 was sponsored by Sen. Magnus Abbé and 22 others, among them Senator Albert.

BILLS SPONSORED BY SENATOR ALBERT

1. The National Youth Employment and Development Bill 2017

The Bill seeks to repeal the National Directorate of Employment Act 2004, and in its place, establish the National Youth Employment and Development Agency Act to provide for the promotion, coordination and employment of youths in Nigeria. It also seeks to expand the scope of NDE to strengthen its operations for optimal performance. The Bill passed through second reading on Wednesday, 7th June, 2017.

2. The Nigerian Industrial Revolution Plan Bill

The Bill, which was read the first time on the 14th October, 2015 seeks to establish a legal and institutional framework for the implementation of the industrial revolution plan and the National Enterprise Development Programme of the Federal Government to provide for their implementation, continuity and sustainability. It also seeks to ensure ownership of the processes, initiate activities for the industrial plan and the programme by relevant ministries, departments and agencies for the overall realization and delivery of the industrial plan and programmes.

The overall objective of the Bill is to accelerate the build up of industrial capacity within Nigeria; increase manufacturing contribution to Nigeria’s GDP; drive the process of intense industrialization based on sectors where Nigeria has comparative advantages. The Bill passed has already passed through second reading.

3. Gas Flaring (Prohibition and Punishment) Bill

Senator Albert made yet another history when on Tuesday, November 3, 2016 he presented a Bill for an Act to prohibit flaring of natural gas in Nigeria. The Bill seeks to ensure that natural gas shall not be flared or vented in any oil and gas production operation, block or field, onshore or offshore, or gas facility which shall commence operations after the commencement of the Act. The Bill also seeks to ensure that no operator shall establish an oil and gas facility in Nigeria without obtaining authorization from the Minister under this Act for the design phase, the commissioning and the production phases.

The Senate referred the Bill to the Committee on Gas for further legislative action after it passed through the second reading . Based on this, the committee invited industry stakeholders, oil companies, governmental bodies and the general public to a public hearing on Wednesday, May 31, 2017.

4. Petroleum Industry Administration Bill

The Bill sponsored by Sen. Albert, is aimed at providing an administrative framework for the Nigerian Petroleum industry passed through second reading in the Senate.

PETITIONS PRESENTED BY SENATOR ALBERT

1. Request for the re-instatement of dismissed police officer, Celestine Williams for undisclosed offence without trial in 1996, that is, about 21 years ago. The said officer was re-instated consequent upon a petition presented to the Senate by Senator Albert via a letter dated April 13, 2016. The petition was referred to the committee on ethics, privileges and public petition, which recommended his re-instatement, payment of his entitlements and promotion to the rank of ASP. Mr. Williams has since resumed duties.

2. The state of affairs in the Nigerian Newsprint Manufacturing Company (NNMC) Ltd, Oku Iboku. Senator Albert in a letter dated September 21, 2016 forwarded a petition on the state of affairs at NNMC, Oku Iboku in which NEGRIS, a company that won the bid to manage the company was alleged to be engaging in asset stripping. The petition was laid on Thursday, 29th September, 2016, and the matter referred to committee on ethics, privileges and public petition for legislative action.

3. Illegal conversion and diversion of salaries and allowances of Sgt. Peter John by the Nigerian Police and victimization of Mr. Aniekan Umoh by Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria. Senator Albert laid the two petitions on Tuesday, 21st June, 2016 and was accordingly referred to the committee on ethics, privileges and public petitions.

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4. Victimization of Mr. Aniekan Umoh by Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria.

5. Wrongful dismissal of Debongs Ndem Anietum from the services of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN), Port Harcourt. Senator Albert laid the petition on Wednesday, 19 October, 2016.

6. Victimization and premature retirement of Ntia Thompson from the service of Directorate of Technical Cooperation Africa (DTCA), Ministry of Foreign Affairs for exposing corruption. Senator Albert’s petition to the Senate is dated March 13, 2017. The committee on ethics, privileges and public petitions investigated the matter, and thereafter recommended his reinstatement. Mr. Thompson has since been reinstated.

.7. Wrongful dismissal of an indigene of Akwa Ibom State, Mr. Peter Solomon Archibong by the Nigerian Export Processing Zones Authority (NEPZA) and dismissal of Ex Cpl Imo Sunday by the Nigerian Police Force. According to the petitioners, their dismissals were mala fide and without due process.

OTHER LEGISLATIVE DUTIES

1. Member, Ad-hoc committee on Works
2. Member, Ad-hoc committee on the 2013 Audit Report of the Nigerian Extractive Industry
3. Member, Joint Committee on Petroleum Upstream and Gas to investigate the utilization of the Nigerian Content Development Fund.
4. Member, Committee on Legislative Compliance
5. Member, Ad-hoc Committee on Import Duty Waivers, Concessions and Grants
6. Member, Joint Committee on Petroleum Downstream, Petroleum Upstream and Gas on the 2016 Nudget of NNPC.
7. Member, Joint Committee on Health, Agriculture and Rural Development in respect of a motion on the ban on Nigerian Agricultural products by European Union
8. Member, Ad hoc committee on petition from Dr. George Uboh of Panic Alert Security System (PASS) against Chevron Nig. Limited for fraud of over 4 billion naira.
9. Member, Joint Committee on Petroleum Upstream, Petroleum Downstream and Gas on the Petroleum Industry Governance Bill (PIGB).
10. Chairman, Joint Committee on Gas, Petroleum Upstream, Finance and Appropriation on the implementation of Joint Cash Calls Obligation by NNPC from 2011-2015
11. Delegate to the 133rd and 137th interparliamentary Union (IPU) Assembly in Geneva, Switzerland and St. Petersburg, Russia respectively.

CONSTITUENCY EMPOWERMENT PROGRAMMES

1. OBA Under 20 Unity Cup

The constituency empowerment programme of Senator Bassey Albert commenced in December 2015 with the Under 20 Unity Cup involving the nine local government areas that make up the senatorial district. The winner of the competition received the sum of N1 million; the runners up N750, 000; the third place team got N500, 000. All the participating teams received the sum of N200, 000 each as participating fees. The Most Valuable Player (MVP), Highest Goal Scorer, Best Behaved Team, Best Goalkeeper and the Best Defender all received financial rewards.

2. Annual OBA Undergraduate Scholarship Scheme

Over 100 undergraduates from Akwa Ibom North East Senatorial District studying in various institutions of higher learning across the country have so far benefitted from the Annual OBA Undergraduate Scholarship Scheme. The scheme is to run in the next four years. The beneficiaries were selected after a transparent and rigorous process. The cost of the scholarship scheme is put at over N10 million annually.

3. Skills and Human Capacity Development

Over 3,000 constituents have benefitted from the following skill development programmes facilitated by Senator Albert:

* Post seasonal intervention training facilitated by Senator Albert in partnership with Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN). The training, which took place in Uyo from 22-25 March 2017 give capacity to those who received training in various skills to assist them become better entrepreneurs. The training offered were in the areas of agriculture branding and packaging of agricultural products. The trainees were given start-up capital to start their businesses.

* Workshop on Poultry production, processing and marketing at Institute of Agricultural Research and Marketing (IAR & T), Moor Plantation in Ibadan (an affiliate of University of Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) organized in collaboration with Senate Committee on Agriculture and hosted by Prof. J. A. Adediran. Participants from Akwa Ibom State were nominated by Sen. Albert who is a member of the Senate Committee on Agriculture.

* Vocational training and empowerment of women and youths in partnership with Border Communities Development Agency (BCDA).

* Skills acquisition training for women and youths in cosmetology, fashion design, generator maintenance, computer appreciation, photography/video and catering in partnership with National Directorate of Employment (NDE)

4. Distribution of cooking gas to constituents

On 24th December 2015, as part of his Christmas gift to his constituents, Senator Albert brought large quantities of cooking gas to be distributed free to thousands of Akwa Ibom people irrespective of their political leanings. The senator went on air in planet 101.1 FM to invite people to be part of this largesse.

5. Construction and donation of a well furnished Event Hall to constituents

Senator Albert also constructed and donated a well furnished event hall at 7 E line, Ewet Housing Estate opposite Sun Centre to be at no cost by his constituents for events such as weddings and other social functions.

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6. Construction of massive, multi-purpose event Centre at Ifa in Uyo

Senator Albert is presently constructing a massive, multi-purpose event Centre in Ifa in Uyo. When completed, the Centre will offer facilities like event hall, tutorial sections for UTME, WAEC, NECO as well as sports facilities and a relaxation Centre.

7. Donation of 15 units of desktop computers to UNIUYO

Senator Albert has magnanimously donated 15 units of desktop computers to the University of Uyo to enhance learning in the university.

8. Donation of life enhancing drugs to nine (9) health centers in Akwa Inom North East Senatorial District

To enhance provision of basic health care to his people, Senator Bassey Albert also donated life enhancing drugs to nine health Centre located in the nine local government areas that make up the senatorial district. The benefitting health Centre are: Primary Health Centre, Uyo Itam, Itu; Health Centre, Ikot Otoinye, Uruan; Primary Health Care Operational Base, Nsit Atai; Primary Health Centre, Oboetim, Nsit Ibom; Health Centre, Oko Ita, Ibiono Ibom; Cottage Hospital, Akai Ubium; Health Centre, Ikot Obio Inyang; Primary Health Centre, Uyo; and Primary Health Centre, Nung Udoe, Ibesikpo Asutan.

9. Christmas visits to Constituents

Every December, Senator Albert visits the 9 local government areas that make up the senatorial district to meet with elders, women and youths of the district to rejoice with them in the spirit of the yuletide. He often distribute gifts and cash to the people worth over N10 million.

CONSTITUENCY PROJECTS NOMINATED BY SENATOR ALBERT

2016 Zonal Intervention Projects

The following Zonal Intervention Projects have been nominated by Senator Albert for execution in Akwa Ibom North East Senatorial District. The projects are under the supervision of the following agencies of government: Cross River Basin Development Authority (CRDBA), National Directorate of Employment (NDE) and Maritime Academy.

Most of these projects have been completed and commissioned.

1. Flood and erosion control in Ibesikpo Asutan LGA (CRDBA)
2. Flood and erosion control in Nsit Atai LGA (CRDBA)
3. Flood and erosion control in Ibiono Ibom LGA (CRDBA)
4. Flood and erosion control in Nsit Ibom LGA (CRBDA)
5. Construction of village hall with fence and borehole plant in Ididep Usuk in Ibiono Ibom LGA (CRBDA)
6. Improvement of electricity in Mbiabong Ikot Udo Uwot in Uyo (CRBDA)
7. Construction of market stalls across 9 LGAs in Akwa Ibom North East (NDE)
8. Completion of comprehensive skills acquisition and recreation Centre for Akwa Ibom North East. (NDE)
9. Furnishing/equipping of skills acquisition and recreation Centre for Akwa Ibom North East (NDE)
10. Procurement of cassava/oil palm processing equipment for rural farmers in Ididep Usuk in Ibiono Ibom LGA (Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development)
11. Training on fish fingerlings, production and hatchery management, catfish, tilapia breeding hormones/hatching troughs for fingerlings production and empowerment of the rural farmers of Akwa Ibom North East (Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development)
12. Provision of motor cycles and tricycles (keke NAPEP) for rural farmers of Akwa Ibom North East. (Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development)
13. Training and development of youths of Akwa Ibom North East on maritime related experience (Maritime Academy).

2017 Zonal Intervention Projects nominated by Senator Albert

Senator Albert has also nominated the following special intervention projects to be included in the 2017 Budget under the supervision of the following agencies – Broader Communities Development Agency (BCDA), Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), CRBDA and SMEDAN.

1. Flood and erosion control in Ibiono Ibom LGA (BCDA)
2. Construction/provision of recreational facility for Uyo Club (BCDA)
3. Improvement of electricity by providing 500 KVA transformer in Mbiabong Ikot Udo Uwot in Uyo LGA (SDG)
4. Provision of drugs to rural health centers across the 9 LGAs (BCDA)
5. Flood and erosion control in Nsit Atai LGA (CRBDA)
6. Provision of motorcycles to the rural communities in Akwa Ibom North East (BCDA)
7. Provision of school reading desks in schools across the Akwa Ibom North East (BCDA)
8. Provision of educational materials to College of Education, Afaha Nsit (BCDA)
9. Provision of educational materials to University of Uyo (BCDA)
10. Training and empowerment of women in Akwa Ibom North East in Agricultural skills (SMEDAN)
11. Training and empowerment of youths in Akwa Ibom North East in Agricultural skills (SMEDAN)
12. Provision of furniture and equipment for comprehensive skills acquisition and recreational Centre in Uyo (BCDA)
13. Provision of rural borehole water facilities across Akwa Ibom North East (BCDA)
14. Supply of 2 nos 18 seater bus high roof to aid transportation across Akwa Ibom North East (SDG)
15. Provision of 10 nos incubators to rural health centres across Akwa Ibom North East (SDG).

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APC RENEWED ATTACKS ON MIKE IGINI,RECOUNTING FAILURES

The renewed media attacks, without any gain saying are as a result of the fact that Igini stood his grounds, by refusing to compromise the electoral process through monetary inducement, even after being invited to a meeting in Dubai and other places by some politicians in the state,

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APC RENEWED ATTACKS ON MIKE IGINI,RECOUNTING FAILURES

Mike igini

Dr. Mike Igini giving Governor Udom Emmanuel his certificate of return

It is no news that the members and chieftains of the All progressive congress ( APC) in Akwa Ibom State have renewed their media attacks on the Akwa Ibom state Resident Electoral Commissioner, Mr. Mike Igini, accusing him of frustrating their chances of winning at the tribunal by hiring both online and print media to carry out an onslaught and smear campaigns of calumny, almost on daily basis, which to some political analysts, has become very worrisome and disturbing, especially on the grounds that their allegations against Igini are false, baseless and misleading.

The renewed media attacks, without any gain saying are as a result of the fact that Igini stood his grounds, by refusing to compromise the electoral process through monetary inducement, even after being invited to a meeting in Dubai and other places by some politicians in the state, who were hoping that he will compromise and, also their overdependence on the so call federal might, boasting of how they were going to win the election within three hours, calling on war on the entire state, with their war drums of ” Warsaw will see war” instead of mobilizing the grassroot through voters education like what PDP did in all the units, wards, local and at the state level.

Out of frustration for their failures in the last election, where Nsima Ekere and Akpabio lost in a disgraceful manner, the APC legal team are running amok, with the conditions that they want to recount the ballot papers recorded as valid votes, have access to re-operate the card readers, take into custody all the original results issued by INEC for the elections and others, with claims that these materials are critical to their Case. This is really clear, that the members of APC in Akwa Ibom state are without brains and very shameless and are trying to recount their failures.

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It is very unfortunate that after Nsima Ekere lost in his ward with results signed at all the units of his wards before the presence of his party’s agents, he want a recount of votes, which is not part of the electoral laws In respect to the order by the tribunal to inspect materials, indeed, it is a clear case of recounted failures. For Senator Udoedehe, Senator Ita Enang, Senator Akpabio, Umana Umana, Don Etiebiet, Ini Okopido, Senator Aloysius Etuk ,Ini obong John who is their propaganda machines to wish for a recount of votes even when they know how disgraceful they lost the elections, shows they are very shameless and idiotic set of people.

After their failed attempt to assassinate the character of Mr. Mike Igini, a man whose integrity has never been in doubt, with testimonies from people who has worked with him, known him in the cause of his duties over the years by linking it with electoral malpractice, insisting that he helped the peoples Democratic party to win the 2019 elections in the state,which is nothing but outright falsehood.

They have resorted to another line of falsehood, by linking their failures and the frustration of their legal team to understand what the rule of law says as regard election and tribunal issues to Mr. Mike Igini who is busy trying to ensure that all parties get justice, and also respecting the rulings of the tribunal.

Shortly after woefully losing the election in the State, Senator Akpabio, Obong Nsima Ekere, Senator Udoedehe, Ini Okopido and other APC chieftains started blackmailing each other with the stories that some of them were given money to mobilize the electorates, but they failed to do it and duped Nsima Ekere of billions of naira, without doing anything, with some loosing in their units, like Senator Udoedehe and others, with these accusations and counter accusations, members of APC in the state should be ashamed of themselves for trying to over heat the system, when they know within themselves that they lost the elections before the eyes of everyone.

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Richard Peters is from Uyo and not writing as a member of any political party, but as a concern citizen of Akwa Ibom, Nigeria, who loves people that promote peace, invest on the lives of the people to encourage them to be good ambassadors.

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SOLVING LEADERSHIP PROBLEM: THE CLETUS BASSEY’S METHODOLOGY

The masterclass which is open to all at the cost of N60,000 will start on Tuesday 4th and last till Friday 7th June, 2019 at De Angelo Hotel, Ewet Housing Estate, Uyo – Akwa Ibom State. Registration can be done through: https://bit.ly/2PHHtb4 or through the number 08062842002.

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SOLVING LEADERSHIP PROBLEM: THE CLETUS BASSEY’S METHODOLOGY

“Leaders aren’t born, they are made; and they are made just like anything else, through hard work. That’s the price we’ll have to pay to achieve that goal or any goal.” – Vince Lombardi

There is no gain saying the fact that the world is currently coated with leadership challenges. This can be traced to the facts that many who are in various leadership positions today manipulated their way to become the leaders they claim to be. Truth is, gate-crashing into leadership positions is one thing, discharging the responsibility thereof is yet another thing.

Like Vince Lombardi posited, Leaders aren’t born, they are made. Therefore, assuming leadership positions without adequate preparations for leadership task has been the sole reason for the many leadership challenges we have in our society today, leading to avoidable leadership failure.

Many government and non-governmental organizations are growing backward because leaders who are in charge of these organizations failed to pay the price required for good and qualitative leadership. It can only take a leader who has paid the price required for leadership to understand what leadership is and how to lead. It is not enough that we all want to be successful and do well in life, until we make commitment and take the leap to pursue our dream; our wish will continue to remain imaginary. If we must overcome the many leadership challenge and achieve our desire leadership goals, then we must pay the same prices successful world leaders have paid, one which is empowering our leadership capacity – as opined by Lisa Cash Hanson that: “Leadership is the ability to guide others without force into a direction or decision that leaves them still feeling empowered and accomplish”. And if empowering our leadership capacity is the starting point for good leadership, then with Lead Impact University at our doorstep, it can be rightly said that the solution to our leadership problems is not far fetch.

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Until Archbishop Cletus Bassey’s Lead Impact University emerged as Leaders Moulding Machine, hope for raising better leaders were slim, especially in this part of the world, hence, raising sound and visionary leaders were somewhat difficult. For Cletus Bassey, solving leadership problems centres mainly on raising good leaders and developing their capacity and with his wealth of leadership prowess and experience which span over two decades, he has stamped his name on the catalogue of successful leaders.

A peep into his leadership background shows he has excellent leadership records covering both local and international sphere. Some of the leadership positions he has occupied include: Uyo Chapter Coordinator of Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria, Akwa Ibom State Chairman of Christian Association of Nigeria, President of Akwa Ibom Christian Assembly, Member of Boards of several churches, Proprietor of Lead Impact University, Colorado, United State of America, and General Overseer of Destiny International Mission among others.

With Cletus Bassey’s leadership credentials, one cannot help than accept that he has the capacity to raise and nurture leaders that can make a mark in leadership – just like him. “Leaders in the mould of Cletus Bassey instil in their people a hope for success and a believe in themselves. Positive leaders empower people to accomplish their goals.” This is what Cletus Bassey stands for.

Armed with John Maxwell postulation that “The single biggest way to impact an organization is to focus on leadership development and that there is almost no limit to the potential of an organization that recruits good people, raise them as leaders and continually developed them”, Archbishop Cletus Bassey has created a way out of leadership challenge by initiating an exclusive leadership masterclass organized by the Lead Impact University, Colorado, USA.

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The masterclass is to help those in leadership position and others aspiring to be great leaders to discover the element of holistic leadership to create transformation in all Areas of their life. In the words of John F. Kennedy, “Leaders and learning are indispensable to each other,” therefore, the masterclass provides opportunity for leaders to learn and be equipped with the methodology of tackling the many leadership challenges facing our governments, churches, organizations and even families.

If nations and organizations are desirous of not failing and falling as a result of incompetent leadership, then grooming Leaders with transformative attitude, giving them globally competitive advantage and making them enigma of positive change is the price they must pay to achieve that goal – and same is the mission and vision of Bishop Cletus Bassey’s Lead Impact University. “No man will make a great leader who wants to do it all himself or get all the credit for doing it.” – Andrew Carnegie

Since leadership is a privilege to better the lives of others according to Mwai Kibaki, Archbishop Cletus Bassey through Lead Impact University is offering an opportunity for leaders and intended leaders including those who gatecrash into leadership positions to sharpen their leadership skills and better their lives. The opportunity which is enveloped in the three days exclusive masterclass is the first of its kind in this part of the world and is aimed at changing the narrative of leadership in different sectors of our society including churches, organizations, Local Government Councils, State and Federal Governments, family and communities.

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At the end of the masterclass, participants will, apart from acquiring global leadership experience, go home with examination based certificate on leadership course from Lead Impact University valued at 3 hours credit load.

The masterclass which is open to all at the cost of N60,000 will start on Tuesday 4th and last till Friday 7th June, 2019 at De Angelo Hotel, Ewet Housing Estate, Uyo – Akwa Ibom State. Registration can be done through: https://bit.ly/2PHHtb4 or through the number 08062842002.

Lead Impact University is a Christian university made to influencing the next generation of leaders to impact the global community with the Christ. The school is at the forefront of pioneering change in the leadership of this generation and future generations to come. Lead Impact University is not just raising leaders, but the kind of leaders that will make an everlasting impact on the world and the kingdom of God.

(c) NDANTI EKUH

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